Change Region:

International Transport of Household goods and Personal effects:

In BR EXPORT USA we have more than 10 years of experience moving families across the world, shipping containers with personal effects, house hold goods, and personal vehicles from North America to overseas, we will take care of all details and help you achieve a stress free move.

International moving and family relocation from one country to another is one of the biggest decisions any family can make.

Moving HH-Goods and Personal Effects for international shipping:

Moving your goods internationally is not like moving local, International house moving are a completely different process, involving export packing, inland transport of the container, container loading, container shipping, ocean freight, export documentation and Customs clearance.

How to Ship Personal Effects Overseas:

Shipping your personal effects overseas can be a complex process, but with careful planning and the right steps, you can ensure a smooth transition. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you navigate the process.

Step 1: Contact Your Local Consulate

Check Laws and Regulations

  • Contact the Consulate: Reach out to the consulate of the country you’re moving to.
  • Import Laws: Verify the laws and regulations regarding the importation of personal effects and vehicles.
  • Return Programs: If applicable, check for any return programs or tax exemptions for returning residents.
  • Documentation: Ensure you understand the required documentation for importing goods.

Step 2: Contact a Freight Forwarder

Find a Reputable Freight Forwarder

  • Research: Look for freight forwarders in North America, particularly in the USA or Canada.
  • Services Offered: Ensure they handle both shipping and export documentation.
  • Quotes and Pricing: Get quotes from multiple forwarders to compare prices and services.
  • Experience: Choose a forwarder with experience in handling international shipments of personal effects.

Step 3: Prepare and Package Your Personal Effects

Packing Tips

  • Quality Materials: Use sturdy boxes, bubble wrap, and packing tape.
  • Labeling: Clearly label all boxes with their contents and the destination room.
  • Inventory List: Create a detailed inventory of all items being shipped.
  • Fragile Items: Pack fragile items carefully, using plenty of cushioning material.
  • Prohibited Items: Check the destination country’s list of prohibited items to avoid issues at customs.

Preparing for Container Loading

  • Organize Items: Group items by category (e.g., kitchen, bedroom) for easier unpacking.
  • Secure Packing: Ensure all items are securely packed to prevent movement during transit.
  • Weight Distribution: Distribute weight evenly in the boxes to avoid damage.

Step 4: Loading and Shipping

Coordinate with Your Freight Forwarder

  • Schedule Pickup: Arrange a pickup time for your packed goods with your freight forwarder.
  • Loading the Container: If using a container, make sure it’s loaded efficiently and securely.
  • Shipping Arrangements: Your freight forwarder will handle the logistics of shipping your goods to the destination country.

During Transit

  • Tracking: Use tracking information provided by the freight forwarder to monitor your shipment’s progress.
  • Stay Informed: Keep in touch with the freight forwarder for any updates or potential issues.

Upon Arrival

  • Customs Clearance: Your freight forwarder will assist with customs clearance in the destination country.
  • Delivery: Arrange for the delivery of your goods to your new home.

What kind of container do i need to contract for shipping?

Choosing the right container for shipping your personal effects and vehicles is crucial for a smooth and efficient move. The size and type of container you need will depend on the volume of goods you plan to ship and whether you have a vehicle to include. Here’s a guide to help you make the right decision.

Container Options

1. 20ft Container

  • Capacity: Approximately 33 cubic meters (cbm) or 1,165 cubic feet.
  • Ideal For: Smaller household moves or one vehicle with some additional cargo.
  • Usage: Suitable for compact moves where space is limited but a full container is still necessary.

2. 40ft Container

  • Capacity: Approximately 67 cubic meters (cbm) or 2,350 cubic feet.
  • Ideal For: Larger household moves, multiple vehicles, or one vehicle with a substantial amount of personal effects.
  • Usage: Best for comprehensive moves where you need ample space for furniture, appliances, and other large items.

3. Less than Container Load (LCL)

  • Capacity: Variable, based on your specific needs (consolidated shipping).
  • Ideal For: Smaller shipments that do not require a full container.
  • Usage: Cost-effective option where your goods are grouped with other shipments in a shared container.

Factors to Consider

Volume of Goods

  • Calculate Cubic Meters/Cubic Feet: Measure the total volume of your goods. This will help determine whether you need a 20ft or 40ft container, or if an LCL service is sufficient.
  • Inventory List: Create a detailed inventory of all items to be shipped, including dimensions and weights.

Shipping a Vehicle

  • Single Vehicle: A 20ft container can typically accommodate one vehicle with some additional space for personal effects.
  • Multiple Vehicles or Large Cargo: A 40ft container is recommended if you are shipping more than one vehicle or if you have a significant amount of household goods in addition to your vehicle.


  • Full Container Load (FCL): More expensive but ideal for larger shipments.
  • Less than Container Load (LCL): More affordable for smaller shipments, as you only pay for the space you use.

Destination Regulations

  • Import Restrictions: Check the destination country’s regulations regarding container sizes and types.
  • Customs Requirements: Ensure compliance with customs documentation for the chosen container type.

Shipping services offered from North America:

We offer shipping services for international house moving from all the Cities and states in the United States of America and Canada with destinations to Europe, North Europe, Africa, West Africa, Middle East, Asia, Central America, The Caribbean, South America, Australia, and New Zealand.

Popular destinations for International relocations with Household Goods and vehicles:

South America:

Montevideo Uruguay
Buenos Aires Argentina                       Asuncion Paraguay
San Antonio Chile
La Paz Bolivia
El Callao Peru
Guayaquil Ecuador
Buenaventura Colombia


Lagos Nigeria
Tema Ghana
Dakar Senegal                             Douala Cameroon
Cape Town South Africa


Barcelona Spain
Valencia Spain                                 Algeciras Spain                             Madrid Spain
Le Havre France                             Paris France
Rotterdam Netherlands                       Antwerp Belgium
Bremerhaven Germany
Southampton UK



Sydney Australia
Brisbane Australia
Auckland New Zealand










Photo Gallery of personal effects and vehicles loading examples inside of containers:

Container loading with household goods and vehicles, cars, motorcycles, should be a good method to optimize the space and safe money on shipping, you can see below pictures an examples.

International relocations HH Goods BR EXPORT USA

International relocations - HH Goods BR EXPORT USA LOGISTICS

International relocations - HH Goods BR EXPORT USA LOGISTICS




Major ports terminals in North America to export containers with personal effects:


  • Port of New York & New Jersey, United States.
  • Port of Baltimore Maryland, United States.
  • Port of Savannah, Georgia, United States.
  • Port of Miami Florida, United States.
  • Port of Houston, Texas, United States.
  • Port of Oakland, California, United States.
  • Port of Long Beach, California, United States.
  • Port of San Francisco, California, United States.


  • Port of Halifax in Nova Scotia Canada.
  • Port of Vancouver, BC, Canada.

What documents are needed to ship household items?


The requirements to import and export HH Goods from USA to overseas are to present the commercial invoice translated into English and the detailed packing list, which must indicate the details of the quantity, the type of personal effects and the shipment location, and then provide the following documents to Customs:

Imports of household goods must have the following documentation:

  • Bill of lading manifest, which is used for the import, release, and tax purposes.
  • Tax Identification Number or personal ID
  • Location of the tariff subheading, and commodity
  • Customs Value Declaration
  • Debt free
  • Moving Inventory to overseas (original)
  • Have a contact with a trade or company patent that must indicate that you are going to import personal effects.
  • Demonstrate economic solvency
  • Establish the terms of the Incoterms agreement for importation.
  • Find a good customs broker
  • Shipping company’s original bill of lading, sea waybill or airwaybill
  • Packing list
  • Commercial invoice
  • Combined Certificate of Value and Origin if needed (CCVO)
  • Power of attorney that authorizes your customs broker to clear de import for you with Customs.

If you need more information to ship a container with household items you can contact BR LOGISTICS USA o BR LOGISTICS EUROPE